Basic Marketing Tips for Solo-Entrepreneurs

The last few months have been a real eye opener developing new connections and marketing effectively. I have been greatly inspired to re-evaluate my networking and social media marketing. Especially since I have two entrepreneurial businesses that are keeping me busy (I love what I do as an entrepreneur). I am constantly researching looking for ways to be creative in my business development which is not always easy because of wealth of information that can be found online.

I don’t get caught up in the hype or fall into prey in spending hundreds of dollars after every “free” webinar. Word to wise… a few good “free” webinars can save on the bank account. Taking a few ideas from like-minded “how to” networking webinar presentations could lead to a few pages of great ideas; however, I don’t discourage investing in training, workshops, classes etc.

I want to share a few tips thus far that I have learned:
1) Get use to networking to brand yourself.
2) Understand there is a difference between branding YOU and branding your Business.
3) If you are not on social media, particularly Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram etc then get with the program. This is why you want to understand who/what you are branding…Actually, I love twitter because there are more connections I have obtained world-wide then LinkedIn/Facebook; however, I use LinkedIn and Facebook for different purposes that makes sense TO ME!
4) Use the below social media outlets multiple ways (my personal opinion):

Facebook: Personal and Business. Also join groups in Facebook.

Twitter: Create a personal and/or business account. Follow tweets on your accounts that represents the same career industry as your company. Tweet more of personal thoughts to your personal tweet account…

Twitter is also a great source to connect with individuals who do not have Facebook or LinkedIn accounts. This is why I feel Twitter reaches a larger pool of individuals who you can find with similar goals and career interests.

LinkedIn: There is a great deal of discussion in the “professional” world as how a person’s LinkedIn page should be represented. Well….my opinion is that there is no uniform answer. You can pay to have someone set up your LinkedIn profile for your personal or business branding. I prefer to find free webinars presented by “Guru” LinkedIn pros to obtain their opinions. Ultimately, use your best judgment that fits “YOU.”

Instagram: Great way to post pictures or ads of your services. Use different pic apps to get creative and subscribe to those that fit your customer/client demographic of your business.

“Get networking in your life!”….Mission…Possible!

Cassaundra

Are MOOC Courses for You?

Have you heard of MOOC?

Massive Open Online Courses are idea for anyone seeking affordable and quality professional development courses online. Free courses that are offered by many credible universities in just about every community.

MOOC courses typically do not offer official “transferable credit” for those looking to use the course(s) to transfer to other colleges/universities; however, MOOC courses can be very viable to one’s professional and personal growth. Many of the courses offer to provide an official Certificate of Completion for a fee or you can often print an unofficial copy online for your own records.

To begin searching for MOOC courses, start your online search with your local college or you can conduct a random Google search “MOOC” and you will find a list of courses by various companies (i.e. Coursera or EdX) that partner with universities to offer courses online.

“I do not endorse the above mentioned MOOC providers, but only list the above companies as examples of companies you will find providing MOOC learning options.”

Cassaundra
Mission…..Possible!

Working-At-Home: Not Just For MOMS!

The working-at-home concept has been traditionally marketed to moms who wanted to work while not feeling the separation anxiety and stresses of being away from family for 10-15 hour days. Let’s face it, now with the job market is little more challenging for unemployed individuals or for people like me who has worked in an office environment for decades and may be ready to work-at-home too.

The opportunities for flexible work at/from home jobs or small home based business start-up are endless for career changers or those who are sick of the office scene that involved 8 am Monday morning meetings , office gossip or the last minute overtime work that you are not getting paid for overtime because you are a salaried employee.  

It’s time to enjoy the comforts of having his/her own office with a mahogany desk with a fancy leather seat. Setting your own meetings. No one demanding overtime. Don’t forget the fresh home-made lunches and spending more time at the fitness center.

Preparation:
 Try  to have a separate space for your office that is away from high traffic area such as the kitchen or family room. If this is not possible, set up a work space that you can dedicate on a consistent basis. Don’t forget to check with an accountant or IRS regarding tax deduction for home office space.

Set an action plan when and how you are going to work and be consistent. Even though you are in charge, you want to give yourself structure to avoid wasting time and procrastination. Just because you work from home doesn’t mean you should have family and friends over for a visit during YOUR work hours. Some people will look at working at home as not as serious as a “traditional” office job but that’s their issue not yours. Simply, it’s your house and your rules. I personally don’t cater to uninvited quests anytime (except for emergencies) even when I was working away from home so that bad habit of uninvited guests never crossed over when I began working from home.

What about the feeling of isolation?  Think about it. Because you set your own hours, the feeling of isolation is  hopefully minimal because you can still arrange for lunch dates or attend networking events or seminars because of YOUR flexible work time.

Quick Tips On Self-Management Remote Worker

Today’s world of telecommuting or remote working is increasing in popularity. Working from home can be very productive with a little effort and personal commitment. Expansion opportunities or cost cutting measures has forced many employers to shed the glamour office environment to a skeleton local crew and hiring more telecommuters. Doors are opening to many new career opportunities for people to jump on the band wagon in every career field from entry-level to executive level.

~Quick Tips on managing yourself while working from home:

  1. Develop a schedule and stick to it–routines will get you work in a consistent manner.
  2. Separate your work space from living space–your area should get you in the mood to work
  3. Set boundaries between you and your family activities when you are free to socialize
  4. Don’t forget to schedule personal time (lunch, workout, meditation, etc)

Cassaundra

Where To Find Free Training As A Solo-Entrepreneur

When looking for ways to learn how to start a business, social media marketing ideas or looking for alternative to ways to developing your business skills consider signing up for “free” online webinar training(s). Webinars can be found online just about in any social media site..especially on Facebook and Twitter. Search for people who specializes in the area you desire to learn about and look for their archives or most recent online webinar segments.

Another way to be alerted to free webinars is to subscribe to newsletters or “Like” Facebook Business Pages of your favorite author/speakers/coach/consultant or trainer etc. This is a good way to be alerted of upcoming webinars on a regular basis and the organizer may offer post-access or recordings for an additional few days.

As a solo-entrepreneur, I understand what it means to be on a shoe-string budget operating several home-based businesses. Cost for training’s can add up very quickly if you are not incorporating the costs in your annual budget.

Happy Training!

Cassaundra

Telecommuting/Remote Careers: Growing Alternative

Have you heard about telecommuting and remote careers? The world of telecommuting is bridging the gap to finding alternative careers. Why not consider looking for telecommuting or Flex-Job opportunities? Telecommuting/remote opportunities can offer a person a chance to learning new opportunities or finding that ideal job that may not be available at a traditional (non telecommuting) brick and mortar location.

Telecommuting, work-at-home, and flex-jobs are all terms commonly used to describe a person who works from home as either an employee or as an independent contractor/freelancer. Employers in the United States and other countries have been embracing this type of work option for years but unfortunately it’s not as publicly promoted (depending in the media stream used). You have to know where to go to search for telecommuting/remote careers.

How to find opportunities:

  • Employer Career Sites Search company job postings pages by using the key words such as “telecommuting, remote, work at home.”
  • Indeed.com: Easy way is to enter in the location field “remote” or “telecommute” and in the job title field you can enter your preferred job title such as “customer service” or go as broad of title such as “teacher” or a company’s name. You may have to play around with options depending on how specialized you want the search.
  • Social Media: Use Keywords-telecommuting, work at home, remote work etc.
  • LinkedIn: Join groups relating to telecommuting and follow companies that are strictly remote.
  • FlexJobs.com:  Legitimate employers are screened by Flexjobs staff. Employers listed are in all states but I have seen job leads from employers from other countries. There is a membership fee (inexpensive), but well worth finding opportunities. It could take some time depending on your interest and location.
  • Networking: Talk to people you know to inquire if their company have or hire telecommuters or offer work-at-home contract work. Also ask if they know someone who works from home who can offer insight about his/her company.

Happy Job Hunting!

Cassaundra

Ready To Be In The Freelance Business?

Do you have what it takes to be a freelancer? For many, freelancing is a primary source of income outlet that has the best of times and some not so good times. If you are thinking about freelancing, take a look a few suggestions on to prepare as a freelancer.

Time Management Skills: Prioritize

Under promise and over deliver. If you over promote and you can’t deliver, don’t be surprised if the client terminates the relationship and say good-bye to possible your credibility in the event a reference check is done by another client who needs to validate your work.

Work Space: Organization

Identify your work space if you are a work-at-home entrepreneur. Define an area that is only for you and your freelance business. Set up your space that inspires you to work and have things that represents your business.

Organize your space with functional storage items that does not clutter your work space. Choose appropriate storage sizes that is versatile and can be interchangeable if you outgrow it’s usefulness.

Network: Increase Your Options

Freelance projects can vary in length and can end unexpectedly. Try to aim to be one-step ahead by seeking a few small freelance projects that can bring in quick income while you are pursing the potential big project money-making opportunities. Network with others in your specialty to obtain ideas where to find opportunities.

Happy Freelancing!